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There is no other description for what is happening other than war crime and genocide.   Israel is technically the occupying force on Gaza and as such is duty bound to protect civilians.   Complet

The scenes in Gaza look like the aftermath of a nuclear bomb, utter devastation. The Israelis telling people to go back to their homes in northern Gaza as its "safe", what are they supposed to go back

Reported on the BBC too... An air strike on an army camp has killed three soldiers, the Syrian government says, blaming the US-led coalition for the attack. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-

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  • Location: Sheffield South Yorkshire 160M Powering the Sheffield Shield
  • Weather Preferences: Any Extreme
  • Location: Sheffield South Yorkshire 160M Powering the Sheffield Shield

    Apparently Mr Cameron is going to announce his policy on the middle east in a few days time. Now whether this an adjusted policy or a slight admittance he didn't have one in the first place is for you to decide. MP's have hinted strongly they want a proper formulated plan with a proper exit strategy this time.

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  • Location: Camborne
  • Location: Camborne

    I don't know about an exit strategy but an entry one will be no walk in the park without inflicting massive civilian casualties. IS territory remains one of the safer parts of Syria: aid officials in Turkey say that in September and October as many as 70,000 civilians fled to Islamic State from the province of Homs. Coalition bombing in the caliphate is much less indiscriminate than that of the Russian and Syrian air forces elsewhere. What is more, food is cheaper and there is justice of a sort. There is also a functioning economy, largely thanks to an estimated 20,000-30,000 barrels of oil pumped daily from captured fields in eastern Syria and northern Iraq.

     

    Its dependence on oil revenues—they provide around $50m a month, according to investigative reporting by the Financial Times—is just one way in which IS looks more like an old-fashioned Arab dictatorship than a new Islamic Utopia. It doles out alms to the poor in exchange for total obedience. It promotes a cult of personality around Mr Baghdadi. It churns out turgid propaganda about repaired bridges and newly opened schools. Like all the region’s successful autocracies, it has created multiple and mutually suspicious security services, the better to stave off coups.

     

    The ramping up of aerial attacks by France, Russia and the US will obviously cause much damage But the capture of large cities like Raqqa and Mosul will require a far bigger effort on the ground. And as Sinjar and Kobane have shown, the cost will be high: both those towns now lie in ruins. The challenge is not just the diplomatic and military one of mustering, motivating, co-ordinating and deploying sufficient forces, huge though that is. It is also humanitarian: such action is likely to displace still more desperate refugees, and leave them little to return to.

    Edited by knocker
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  • Location: Mostly Watford but 3 months of the year at Capestang 34310, France
  • Weather Preferences: Continental type climate with lots of sunshine with occasional storm
  • Location: Mostly Watford but 3 months of the year at Capestang 34310, France

    I don't know about an exit strategy but an entry one will be no walk in the park without inflicting massive civilian casualties. its territory remains one of the safer parts of Syria: aid officials in Turkey say that in September and October as many as 70,000 civilians fled to Islamic State from the province of Homs. Coalition bombing in the caliphate is much less indiscriminate than that of the Russian and Syrian air forces elsewhere. What is more, food is cheaper and there is justice of a sort. There is also a functioning economy, largely thanks to an estimated 20,000-30,000 barrels of oil pumped daily from captured fields in eastern Syria and northern Iraq.

     

    Its dependence on oil revenues—they provide around $50m a month, according to investigative reporting by the Financial Times—is just one way in which IS looks more like an old-fashioned Arab dictatorship than a new Islamic Utopia. It doles out alms to the poor in exchange for total obedience. It promotes a cult of personality around Mr Baghdadi. It churns out turgid propaganda about repaired bridges and newly opened schools. Like all the region’s successful autocracies, it has created multiple and mutually suspicious security services, the better to stave off coups.

     

    The ramping up of aerial attacks by France, Russia and the US will obviously cause much damage But the capture of large cities like Raqqa and Mosul will require a far bigger effort on the ground. And as Sinjar and Kobane have shown, the cost will be high: both those towns now lie in ruins. The challenge is not just the diplomatic and military one of mustering, motivating, co-ordinating and deploying sufficient forces, huge though that is. It is also humanitarian: such action is likely to displace still more desperate refugees, and leave them little to return to.

    Bloody 'ell knocker, we are damned if we do and damned if we don't but we can't just leave it after the many outrages which have been committed in the name of IS.  My preferred option would be hit and run tactics, trying where possible to cut off the heads of the monster to the extent that this hydra runs out of energy to grow more - this could be done with our various specialist forces and collateral damage would be minimised and gradually wear them down over time.

     

    Meanwhile we try to win hearts and minds, get people onside and try to improve living conditions and education of the people feed from the yoke.

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  • Location: Mostly Watford but 3 months of the year at Capestang 34310, France
  • Weather Preferences: Continental type climate with lots of sunshine with occasional storm
  • Location: Mostly Watford but 3 months of the year at Capestang 34310, France

    An assessment - a point of view from the US

     

    What to do and to don’t in response to the Paris attacks

     

    http://www.understandingwar.org/backgrounder/what-do-and-don%E2%80%99t-response-paris-attacks

    This is written from the mainly American perspective where they appear to be wanting to fight on the main front but not exactly co-operating with others.

     

    It seems that the Americans have not forgotten the 'Cold War' which is in great danger of re-igniting but here is an ideal opportunity to learn to co-operate. Unfortunately a good deal of intransigence and mistrust still exists between the two sides and it seems at times they go out of their way to misunderstand each other. Russian ways are different to ours but at times we should agree to differ but still be prepared to work with each other.

     

    The big danger with continued air attacks is that there will be collateral damage and this should be avoided absolutely as much as is humanly possible and failure to do this will only cause further Sunnis to join in on the IS side.

     

    Rather than have 10,000 American troops on the ground I think it would be better, through the use of special force (international) to have selective targets, mainly the top echelons of IS. This can be achieved by hit and run surprise tactics, i.e. parachute in from high altitude with a low altitude deployment of parachutes with a pre arranged pick by Chinook helicopters.

     

    To have 10,000 troops on the ground will risk those really in charge making good their escape in the confusion and we don't want them to do that.

     

    For the moment I would suggest it expedient to work with the Russians and Assad, though their agendas are somewhat different but a united front is required. To get rid of Assad prematurely will risk a power vacuum which could end up out of the frying pan into the fire which has happened so often in the Middle east before.

     

    As far as the Kurds are concerned for many years they have been the victims being oppressed by Turkey which also has a poor record of human rights and as a result they have formed their own group, the PKK. Although we cannot agree completely with their methods in Turkey, which amount to terrorism, I think it must be realised that they do have some justification.

     

    However the Americans are loathed to upset Turkey because it is a member of NATO and thee are strategic bases there. It does seem somewhat strange however that the Americans are so keen to see Assad go, yet they are quite happy to allow Turkey to continue its repression of the Kurds. It seems like double standard to me.

     

    There is little doubt that the Kurds would dearly love to have their self governing homeland and very likely this is why they are fighting as they do, in fact making a better job of defeating IS than the other ground troops involved.

     

    There should be diplomatic activity with a view to securing a homeland for the Kurds, that way it would take away the necessity for the PKK and encourage them to become valuable allies in the Middle East.

    Edited by mike Meehan
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  • Location: Camborne
  • Location: Camborne

    Rather than have 10,000 American troops on the ground I think it would be better, through the use of special force (international) to have selective targets, mainly the top echelons of IS. This can be achieved by hit and run surprise tactics, i.e. parachute in from high altitude with a low altitude deployment of parachutes with a pre arranged pick by Chinook helicopters.

     

    To have 10,000 troops on the ground will risk those really in charge making good their escape in the confusion and we don't want them to do that.

     

     

    I think many have already decamped to Mosul according to reports coming out of Raqqa.

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  • Location: Sheffield South Yorkshire 160M Powering the Sheffield Shield
  • Weather Preferences: Any Extreme
  • Location: Sheffield South Yorkshire 160M Powering the Sheffield Shield

    An interesting article why though it continues to say the attacks took a lot of planning I don't know. Try planning an attack yourselves it will take you ten minutes.

    Sadly ISIS is here to stay in one form or another perhaps replaced by another organization. People like this will remain until Islam is consigned to the bin of history which will be outside our life times.

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  • Location: Bramley, Hampshire, 70m asl
  • Location: Bramley, Hampshire, 70m asl

    An assessment - a point of view from the US

     

    What to do and to don’t in response to the Paris attacks

     

    http://www.understandingwar.org/backgrounder/what-do-and-don%E2%80%99t-response-paris-attacks

    Interesting read that Knocker. Thanks.

    Another one here, by another Kagan, this time Robert (How many are there?!)

    http://www.wsj.com/articles/the-crisis-of-world-order-1448052095

    This one considers the resolve, or lack of it, within the US and Europe to deal with Syria and Isis.

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  • Location: Calgary, Canada (1230m asl)
  • Weather Preferences: Wind driven falling snow
  • Location: Calgary, Canada (1230m asl)

    An interesting article why though it continues to say the attacks took a lot of planning I don't know. Try planning an attack yourselves it will take you ten minutes.

    Sadly ISIS is here to stay in one form or another perhaps replaced by another organization. People like this will remain until Islam is consigned to the bin of history which will be outside our life times.

     

    I'm not sure your last sentence is very fair, it sounds very anti-Islamic. I wonder how many Muslims are more terrified of ISIS than you are? Probably millions upon millions. You can't wish the demise of a whole religion due to a small % who take an extremist interpretation of it. By that theory Christianity should have been consigned to the bin of history many centuries ago due to "people like this" taking an extremist interpretation of it.

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  • Location: Camborne
  • Location: Camborne

    The more I read and think about this the more of a nightmare situation it becomes. The concentration of the Russian bombing on the Free Syrian Army instead of IS has driven another 70,000 refugees into the caliphate. Estimations of the number of IS fighters varies between 30,000 and 100,000 so let's settle for substantial. And they are not a rag bag army but very well trained. When the Iraqi city of Tikrit was recaptured last April, it took 30,000 soldiers from the Iraqi army and associated Shia militias to overcome 1,000 IS fighters. When IS took the Iraqi city of Ramadi, its forces were outnumbered ten to one by the defenders.

     

    And even if they are driven out who then takes over? It can't possibly be Assad and his Iranian cronies as this is the Sunni homeland and that would inevitable lead to another bloodbath so a safe zone, as has been suggested, is probably the way to go As I said, a nightmare.

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  • Location: Camborne
  • Location: Camborne

    Changing the perspective slightly

     

    The "Syrian Sickness": What Crude Oil Gives, Crude Oil Can Take Back.

     

    Crude oil is a great source of wealth for the countries that possess it. But it is also a wealth that comes as a cycle. Normally, the cycle spans several decades, even more than a century, so that those who live through it may completely miss the fact that they are heading to an end of their wealth. But the cycle is faster and especially visible in those areas where the amount of oil is modest; there, wealth and misery appear one after the other in a dramatic series of events.

    One of these rapid cycles of growth and decline is that of Syria. It is a country that never became a major world producer, its maximum output was less than 1% of the world's total production when it peaked, around 1995. (graph below, from Gail Tverberg's blog). For the small Syrian economy, however, even this limited amount was important.

     

    http://cassandralegacy.blogspot.co.uk/2015/11/the-syrian-sickness-what-crude-oil.html

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  • Location: Powys Mid Wales borders.
  • Location: Powys Mid Wales borders.

    The more I read and think about this the more of a nightmare situation it becomes. The concentration of the Russian bombing on the Free Syrian Army instead.

    Theres hardly any free Syrian army left as they all went to isil/isis/daesh whatever the made up name is only 3 left last count lol.

    https://ixquick-proxy.com/do/spg/show_picture.pl?l=english&rais=1&oiu=http%3A%2F%2Fimages2.wikia.nocookie.net%2F__cb20110421211525%2Farcher%2Fimages%2Ff%2Ffd%2FISIS_Logo.jpg&sp=7be2e13746d8259a146c93dafbdc3708

    Who backs ISIS and how the unmagnificant 7. :diablo: 

    https://ixquick-proxy.com/do/spg/show_picture.pl?l=english&rais=1&oiu=http%3A%2F%2Fdcwatchdog.org%2Fwp-content%2Fuploads%2F2015%2F11%2Fsyria-isis-backers-1.jpg&sp=b065373de2d1a01c43c0035f5dbca33f

    Edited by Snowyowl9
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  • Location: Camborne
  • Location: Camborne

    A military operation to take Raqqa, the Isis capital, would require as many as 50,000 troops and involve complex political negotiations to co-ordinate a “war of a hundred armiesâ€, former military commanders have said.

     

    The jihadists have begun building defensive bunkers and tunnels around their stronghold in northern Syria, as US-backed Kurdish and Arab rebel forces gather 20 miles to the north.

     

    Attention has focused on the city, described by David Cameron as “the snake’s headâ€, after the UN Security Council called on world powers to “eradicate†Isis havens in Syria and Iraq.

     

    A force of about 25,000 would be required to take the city itself, backed by tanks, artillery and aircraft, said Brigadier Ben Barry, head of the land warfare programme at the International Institute for Strategic Studies.

     

    A former British general, who asked to remain anonymous, said that perhaps the same number again would be required to guard supply lines and ferry logistics to the fighting force from Turkey, in a “dangerous and difficult environmentâ€.

     

    He said that the operation would require “overall Arab ownership of the enterprise†as well as an undertaking by the international community to provide unlimited military and financial support. “It would need UN cover but just as important would be to wind up the Arab League — a serially incompetent organisation — to take long-term command.â€

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  • Location: Sheffield South Yorkshire 160M Powering the Sheffield Shield
  • Weather Preferences: Any Extreme
  • Location: Sheffield South Yorkshire 160M Powering the Sheffield Shield

    I'm not sure your last sentence is very fair, it sounds very anti-Islamic. I wonder how many Muslims are more terrified of ISIS than you are? Probably millions upon millions. You can't wish the demise of a whole religion due to a small % who take an extremist interpretation of it. By that theory Christianity should have been consigned to the bin of history many centuries ago due to "people like this" taking an extremist interpretation of it.

    By stating the truth is anti islamic then so be it. We spent too much time being afraid of upsetting one person in an hundred. Another reason why extremists have been allowed to spread.

    Christianity is already dying it's weakness is also used by Islamic extremists as to why we are unworthy.However is perfectly okay to say Christianity is dying.

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  • Location: Camborne
  • Location: Camborne

    By stating the truth is anti islamic then so be it. We spent too much time being afraid of upsetting one person in an hundred. Another reason why extremists have been allowed to spread.

    Christianity is already dying it's weakness is also used by Islamic extremists as to why we are unworthy.However is perfectly okay to say Christianity is dying.

     

    That's far too dogmatic. It should be what you perceive to be the 'truth' Rather reminds me of the quote by Daniel Patrick Moynihan

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  • Location: Sheffield South Yorkshire 160M Powering the Sheffield Shield
  • Weather Preferences: Any Extreme
  • Location: Sheffield South Yorkshire 160M Powering the Sheffield Shield

    You've got to remember Knocker most of the Rebels who ISIS are ALQ backed instead.Those that aren't still have no recognized leader and have zero chance of forming a Government. If that wasn't the case life would be much simpler. The only way forward is to broker a deal with Russia to get Assad to stand down once elections have taken place. This may or may not appease the Saudi's if it doesn't they will continue to fund terrorism. Iran will probably follow Russia's lead.

    The West also needs to find away to stop the Saudi's from wagging our tails

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  • Location: Beccles, Suffolk.
  • Weather Preferences: Thunder, snow, heat, sunshine...
  • Location: Beccles, Suffolk.

    People like this will remain until Islam is consigned to the bin of history which will be outside our life times.

    Nonsense PIT!

     

    Why then, after so many innocent people were racked, garroted, disemboweled and/or burned alive, throughout recorded history (for such heinous crimes as not believing in transubstantiation or childhood baptism) was Christianity not 'consigned to the bin of history' 400 years ago? :cc_confused:

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  • Location: Sheffield South Yorkshire 160M Powering the Sheffield Shield
  • Weather Preferences: Any Extreme
  • Location: Sheffield South Yorkshire 160M Powering the Sheffield Shield

    So you really that naive to think that Isis will disappear in a puff of smoke if they get dislodged from Syria and Iraq???

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  • Location: Beccles, Suffolk.
  • Weather Preferences: Thunder, snow, heat, sunshine...
  • Location: Beccles, Suffolk.

    Daesh needs destroyed, but the wholesale destruction of Islam is nothing to do with it...Not that I can even see how you've managed to conflate things, anyway...

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  • Location: Camborne
  • Location: Camborne

    You've got to remember Knocker most of the Rebels who ISIS are ALQ backed instead.Those that aren't still have no recognized leader and have zero chance of forming a Government. If that wasn't the case life would be much simpler. The only way forward is to broker a deal with Russia to get Assad to stand down once elections have taken place. This may or may not appease the Saudi's if it doesn't they will continue to fund terrorism. Iran will probably follow Russia's lead.

    The West also needs to find away to stop the Saudi's from wagging our tails

     

    I must admit that if, during discussions on the complexity of the current situation in the Middle East, I see the comment "the only way forward" I tend to start blinking rapidly.

    Edited by knocker
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  • Location: Sheffield South Yorkshire 160M Powering the Sheffield Shield
  • Weather Preferences: Any Extreme
  • Location: Sheffield South Yorkshire 160M Powering the Sheffield Shield

    Daesh needs destroyed, but the wholesale destruction of Islam is nothing to do with it...Not that I can even see how you've managed to conflate things, anyway...

    Nope you did that yourself as per normal.

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    Posted
  • Location: Devizes Wiltshire
  • Location: Devizes Wiltshire

    Isis will be here to stay untill Saudi Arabia stops funding them and destroying the region and caring out Isis kind of punishment and brutality 

    Edited by lfcdude
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  • Location: Beccles, Suffolk.
  • Weather Preferences: Thunder, snow, heat, sunshine...
  • Location: Beccles, Suffolk.

    Nope you did that yourself as per normal.

    Nyet. And I quote: "Sadly ISIS is here to stay in one form or another perhaps replaced by another organization. People like this will remain until Islam is consigned to the bin of history which will be outside our life times."

     

    Are those not your words? :cc_confused:

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  • Location: Beccles, Suffolk.
  • Weather Preferences: Thunder, snow, heat, sunshine...
  • Location: Beccles, Suffolk.

    Isis will be here to stay untill Saudi Arabia stops funding them and destroying the region and caring out Isis kind of punishment and brutality 

    I agree with that lfcdude: so long as our Saudi mates are allowed to continue their barbarity, ISIS have the 'green light'...to do the same.

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